Journal of Meteorological Research

, Volume 31, Issue 5, pp 931–945 | Cite as

A nowcasting technique based on application of the particle filter blending algorithm

  • Yuanzhao Chen
  • Hongping Lan
  • Xunlai Chen
  • Wenhai Zhang
Regular Article
  • 9 Downloads

Abstract

To improve the accuracy of nowcasting, a new extrapolation technique called particle filter blending was configured in this study and applied to experimental nowcasting. Radar echo extrapolation was performed by using the radar mosaic at an altitude of 2.5 km obtained from the radar images of 12 S-band radars in Guangdong Province, China. The first bilateral filter was applied in the quality control of the radar data; an optical flow method based on the Lucas–Kanade algorithm and the Harris corner detection algorithm were used to track radar echoes and retrieve the echo motion vectors; then, the motion vectors were blended with the particle filter blending algorithm to estimate the optimal motion vector of the true echo motions; finally, semi-Lagrangian extrapolation was used for radar echo extrapolation based on the obtained motion vector field. A comparative study of the extrapolated forecasts of four precipitation events in 2016 in Guangdong was conducted. The results indicate that the particle filter blending algorithm could realistically reproduce the spatial pattern, echo intensity, and echo location at 30- and 60-min forecast lead times. The forecasts agreed well with observations, and the results were of operational significance. Quantitative evaluation of the forecasts indicates that the particle filter blending algorithm performed better than the cross-correlation method and the optical flow method. Therefore, the particle filter blending method is proved to be superior to the traditional forecasting methods and it can be used to enhance the ability of nowcasting in operational weather forecasts.

Key words

radar echo particle filter blending bilateral filter semi-Lagrangian extrapolation nowcasting 

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Copyright information

© The Chinese Meteorological Society and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuanzhao Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hongping Lan
    • 2
  • Xunlai Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wenhai Zhang
    • 3
  1. 1.Meteorological Bureau of Shenzhen MunicipalityShenzhenChina
  2. 2.Shenzhen Key Laboratory of Severe Weather in South ChinaShenzhenChina
  3. 3.Shenzhen Academy of Severe Storm ScienceShenzhenChina

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